Retired generals urge Obama to keep Gitmo promise

In a letter to the president, 27 former military leaders call for renewed efforts to close the facility

Topics:

Retired generals urge Obama to keep Gitmo promiseDetainees at Camp X-Ray, Guantanamo Bay (Wikimedia)

Twenty-seven retired military generals and admirals signed their names to a letter Tuesday, urging President Obama to follow through on his four-year-old promise to close the U.S. detention facility in Guantánamo.

Last week the White House threatened to veto a new version of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), which in its current form could impose prisoner transfer restrictions that may compromise plans to close the facility. Last year, Obama threatened a veto over similar objections but backed down and signed the act into law. As such, retired top military brass are urging a redoubling of efforts to close the camp. The letter, organized by Human Rights First, noted:



There remains a clear path to closing Guantanamo during the second term of your presidency. Detainees who have been unanimously cleared for transfer by the interagency taskforce, which included all the relevant security and intelligence agencies, should be transferred. Detainees who have allegedly committed crimes should face civilian trials in federal courts or an appropriate foreign jurisdiction. Although your administration continues to hold law of war detainees without charge or trial, under the laws of war they may be held only while hostilities are ongoing. We are approaching the end of the war in Afghanistan and the Secretary of Defense has said that the United States is “within reach of strategically defeating Al Qaeda.” Your administration should now turn its attention to what it will take to combat terrorism over the long term.

Human Rights First has put forward an updated Blueprint on how to close Guantánamo in President Obama’s second-term.

Natasha Lennard

Natasha Lennard is an assistant news editor at Salon, covering non-electoral politics, general news and rabble-rousing. Follow her on Twitter @natashalennard, email nlennard@salon.com.

More Related Stories

Featured Slide Shows

  • Share on Twitter
  • Share on Facebook
  • 1 of 11
  • Close
  • Fullscreen
  • Thumbnails

    "Roman Candle" turns 20: Secrets of Elliott Smith's accidental masterpiece (slideshow)

    Elliott and the friends with whom he recorded in middle school in Texas (photo courtesy of Dan Pickering)

    "Roman Candle" turns 20: Secrets of Elliott Smith's accidental masterpiece (slideshow)

    Heatmiser publicity shot (L-R: Tony Lash, Brandt Peterson, Neil Gust, Elliott Smith) (photo courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)

    "Roman Candle" turns 20: Secrets of Elliott Smith's accidental masterpiece (slideshow)

    Elliott and JJ Gonson (photo courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)

    "Roman Candle" turns 20: Secrets of Elliott Smith's accidental masterpiece (slideshow)

    "Stray" 7-inch, Cavity Search Records (photo courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)

    "Roman Candle" turns 20: Secrets of Elliott Smith's accidental masterpiece (slideshow)

    Elliott's Hampshire College ID photo, 1987

    "Roman Candle" turns 20: Secrets of Elliott Smith's accidental masterpiece (slideshow)

    Elliott with "Le Domino," the guitar he used on "Roman Candle" (courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)

    "Roman Candle" turns 20: Secrets of Elliott Smith's accidental masterpiece (slideshow)

    Full "Roman Candle" record cover (courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)

    "Roman Candle" turns 20: Secrets of Elliott Smith's accidental masterpiece (slideshow)

    Elliott goofing off in Portland (courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)

    "Roman Candle" turns 20: Secrets of Elliott Smith's accidental masterpiece (slideshow)

    Heatmiser (L-R: Elliott Smith, Neil Gust, Tony Lash, Brandt Peterson)(courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)

    "Roman Candle" turns 20: Secrets of Elliott Smith's accidental masterpiece (slideshow)

    The Greenhouse Sleeve -- Cassette sleeve from Murder of Crows release, 1988, with first appearance of Condor Avenue (photo courtesy of Glynnis Fawkes)

  • Recent Slide Shows

Comments

0 Comments

Comment Preview

Your name will appear as username ( settings | log out )

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href=""> <b> <em> <strong> <i> <blockquote>